SAP Service Parts Planning Fine-Tunes After-Sales Business

  • by Ute Messmer, SCM Consultant, Westernacher (April 2009)
  • April 30, 2009
See a summary of how the planning process works in Service Parts Planning from a functional viewpoint. Get a functional description of the standard planning process steps and the corresponding planning services offered by Service Parts Planning.
Key Concept

Service Parts Planning was introduced as a component of service parts management with SAP SCM 5.0 in 2006. It includes planning functions to cover the special requirements for service parts. It is not a close derivative of the existing planning functionalities of demand planning or supply network planning in SAP Advanced Planning & Optimization (SAP APO). SAP APO was not designed to deal with the complex business scenario for the after-sales market (e.g., the forward and reverse logistics aspects of the supply chain, unpredictable and sporadic demand, planning for large volumes of parts in complex distribution networks, or optimization of supply alternatives [make or buy, repair, or substitute]).

Effective service parts management must strike a balance between high service levels and increasing logistics costs. The key challenge is having the right part at the right time at the right location to fulfill the service requests without having huge inventory buffers or managing excess stock. Service Parts Planning is designed to help companies provide effective service parts management. Figure 1 is a chronological overview of how the planning process works in Service Parts Planning.

Ute Messmer

Ute Messmer studied industrial engineering with focus on information technology and operations research at the University of Karlsruhe, Germany. Before joining Westernacher and becoming a consultant, she worked for Hewlett-Packard, Germany, in several supply chain operation, design, and management functions.

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